Dear Brian and Mary,
My wife and I were recently on an anniversary trip to Jackson, Wyoming. While there, we spent a day hiking and touring Yellowstone National Park. After a fantastic lunch at Old Faithful Lodge, we hopped in our Jeep and headed South. The first scenic pullout, we decided to stop. Typically we do not stop at "tourist trap" pullout areas, but we chose to this time. Walking out onto the deck overlooking Kepler's Cascades, we took in the beauty of the area. A fantastic and majestic canyon waterfall, dropping 150 feet from the platform where we stood. It was a wonderful and spectacular moment for us, as we were celebrating 6 years of marriage.
As we soaked in the surroundings, we noticed something on the fencing of the deck. Upon closer look, we noticed a picture of a young man in military gear. Picking up the picture, we read the writing on the back, which was very inspiring. We removed the picture, and drove it back to our current hometown of Park City, Utah. We decided to place it on the ski bridge in town, where we were married. The bridge is a significant landmark for us for many reasons.
My wife and I want to express to you our deepest condolences. If I may lay upon you a quote that could be overused at times...
"I feel how weak and fruitless must be any words of mine which should attempt to beguile you from the grief of a loss so overwhelming. But I cannot refrain from tendering to you the consolation that may be found in the thanks of the Republic they died to save. I pray that our heavenly Father may assuage the anguish of your bereavement, and leave you only the cherished memory of the loved and lost, and the solemn pride that must be yours to have laid so costly a sacrifice upon the altar of freedom. Yours very sincerely and respectfully, Abraham Lincoln."
My wife, my 4 daughters and I thank you, and your son, from the bottom of our hearts. I truly hope and pray that the efforts of so many young men and woman will benefit my children, and future generations to come. Our thanks for the heroic efforts of your son.